Tuesday, June 24, 2014

In the Spotlight... Mary Cope

Please join me in welcoming Mary Cope and her new release, Beautiful One.

Here's some info about her book. Be sure to check out the buy links ;-)

Blurb

Elizabeth Ryan is a beautiful, shy, naïve high school senior. Having never dated she meets the boy of her dreams, Aidan Mitchell. Despite his history of womanizing Liz is drawn to him. Soon Liz becomes the envy of all the girls on campus, when they become a couple and her dream boyfriend sweeps her off her feet and into the dating world that is all too new and strange for her. When other guys start to take notice of Liz, Aidan is troubled with fits of jealousy.
Elizabeth then meets the ruggedly handsome, Spencer Hayes and they quickly bond over their passion for music. Liz begins to struggle with the feelings that spark between them.
In the end Elizabeth finds herself torn between helping Aidan overcome his jealousy and anger and giving into what her heart truly wants.


Excerpt from Beautiful One

Chapter One

      The faint sounds of a guitar drifted through the walls of my bathroom as I savored the last of the hot water before it became lukewarm. Stepping away from the spray, I turned the shower knob and watched the droplets trickle down the drain. Inhaling a deep breath my mind focused on one thing. Aidan Mitchell. 
      Hearing Mason’s band practicing meant he would be here. I was ninety-nine percent sure Aidan wouldn’t blow off their practice. He knew how serious my brother was about the band, but he also had been avoiding me for days. 
      The past week had been awful. I was determined to talk to him. All I wanted was a few answers. My emotions had run the gamut from confusion, frustration, regret, and sadness… sadness consumed me most of all, at night usually, and I was exhausted from it. But at this moment all I felt was anger. Anger was good. It was certainly better than pain. 
      As I rushed down the hallway, the floorboards creaked beneath my feet and the walls began to vibrate with the beat of Derek pounding on the drums. When I entered my room the music was deafening, but today I didn’t mind. I untwisted the blue-and-white-polka-dot towel from my head and tossed it to the floor. 
      The deep conditioner I used helped my fingers glide through my long damp curls. If I was going to confront Aidan, I wanted to look my best. No Frizzy Lizzie for me. That nickname, coupled with my big butt, had tormented me, growing up in a beach town surrounded by beautiful people. I had longed to look like a typical California girl: tall, blond, perfect. But, with dark hair and bordering on five feet three inches, that was never going to be me. 
      After I blow-dried and flat-ironed my hair, I took off my purple robe and draped it over my desk chair. I slipped on a pair of jeans… yes, slipped them on. I didn’t have to tug, pull, or jiggle my butt to get in my pants anymore. When I easily pushed the button through the top of my jeans, it still made me smile. I couldn’t even count how many times I had to lie on my bed and suck in my stomach so I could zip up a pair of pants. Every time I slipped them on, I never took it for granted. I had worked my butt off… literally. I put on my bra and a green sweater before I pulled on my boots. 
      I rushed downstairs to the door that led to the garage. Thinking about confronting Aidan and having to stare into those piercing blue eyes started to intimidate me. But this was my chance. I knew he was a few feet behind the door, and I needed to deal with him. Before I completely lost my nerve, I inhaled a deep breath and exhaled then pushed open the door. 
      The stream of sunlight coming in through the open garage door blinded me for a moment. With squinted eyes, I made a beeline to the old brown sofa in the corner. My heart was beating so fast it almost seemed in tempo with Derek pounding the drums. I scooted over our yellow Labrador, Maggie, and wedged myself between her and the arm of the couch. Finally, I looked up to focus my attention on Aidan. 
      He didn’t show. 
      I sunk my head back into the cushions, exhaling a deep, long sigh, trying to rid the tension from my body. The guys were practicing their newest song. Indie-Alternative was their style, and they called themselves Random Plan. I glanced at Mason and could tell he was angry. I mouthed the word “Aidan?” 
Mason just shook his head. 
      “Derek!” The tone in my brother’s voice made me sit up straight. “Derek!” Mason snapped again. 
      Finally Derek stopped and silenced his cymbals. 
      “What?” He lifted the front of his black t-shirt to wipe the sweat from his forehead, exposing his six-pack. His brown eyes bored into Mason’s. “Hey! Just ‘cuz you’re ticked off at the pretty boy, don’t take it out on me.” 
      Derek reached back and grabbed a water from an old bookcase that held a few water bottles, electrical cords, an old CD player, and a collection of CDs. “Hey, Kyle, ya want one?” 
      Kyle nodded and Derek tossed one across the garage to where he stood behind the keyboard. 
      “Mason?” 
      “Yeah, I’ll take one… Sorry, Derek.” 
      Derek gave Mason a head nod and tossed him a bottle. He took a sip while Derek chugged his down. 
      “Okay, start again.” Mason commanded. 
      Derek picked up his sticks and began tapping. 
      I leaned my head back, closed my eyes and listened to the music. Funny, I’d come into the garage so fearless it almost made me laugh. Who would have thought the once-overweight Elizabeth Ryan would stand up to the likes of Aidan Mitchell? I smiled to myself, allowing my mind to drift back to the time when I’d found it hard to even look at him...


Buy Links:

Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/Beautiful-One-Mary-Cope-ebook/dp/B00KWAZZ7G/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1403293355&sr=1-1

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/beautiful-one-mary-cope/1119705617?ean=2940149273836


Bio:
Mary Cope is a freelance writer of romance. Her book, Beautiful One, is the first in a planned trilogy. She enjoys spending time with her family, baking gourmet cookies, listening to music and taking long walks with her yellow Labrador, Maggie.

Website:
http://marycopeauthor.com

Twitter:
https://twitter.com/MaryCope_Author

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mary-Cope/260006794162636

Saturday, June 21, 2014

S.J. Maylee's Blog Tour stops by for a visit

Taking Courage Tour Image
Taking CourageBlurbJanna’s ready to make over her life and get out from under the controlling thumb of her father. She doesn't want another failed arranged marriage. She’s ready to do whatever it takes for the career she wants, enter the lifestyle she craves, and to earn the trust and love of the man that has captured her heart, but heartbreak and career hiccups seem to be her destiny.
Simon’s still recovering after his last submissive lied her way into his life. He’s not ready for Janna and how she pushes against his prejudices. He needs to decide if he’s willing to lose her or if he’ll fight for her love and submission.
Excerpt
      “Head up now.” Something was agitating the tender bundle in his arms. Simon wanted to help her through it. He may have taken a step back on his training responsibilities since his last experience, but Janna felt perfect under his hand. He’d have to find out if she’d be back. “Yes, Sir.” “What's troubling you, pet?” “I forgot to mention something earlier.” She tucked the blanket under her chin. “Oh?” He rubbed in big circles around her back. “Why don't you tell me now?” “This was my first time, Sir.” “Your first?” His confusion was thick. She tried to hide her eyes from him, but he saw shame. Sometimes newer submissives struggled with firsts. “Is this your first time being a guest?” “Yes, Sir.” “Is your home club much different?” The safe rules of BDSM clubs were pretty universal, a real gift to traveling kinksters, but sometimes a scene in a different setting could be unsettling. “I don't have a home club, Sir. Well, not one that I physically visit.” She rubbed the edge of her blanket. “I'm an active member of their chat rooms.” He hadn't heard her right. No. She felt like an experienced submissive. Was she just playing the part? Anger ticked a quick pace up his spine. “Are you telling me I just gave you your first scene?” “Yes, Sir.” “Why did you withhold this information?” When she didn't answer he added, “Why weren't you honest with me?” He pushed her slightly, in part to get some distance and to keep her safe from him. “Answer me, now.” “I forgot. It all happened so fast, and I forgot one of my lines.” “Lines.” He finished shoving her from his lap and stood. “I hope you had fun tonight.” “I did, Sir,” she said as she stood to join him. She tugged at the edge of the blanket that had stuck in the couch. “Please, let me thank you for tonight.” “There is no need. You lied to me, and you had your fun.” He scratched his brow. “Go home now.” He took two storming steps away and stopped. He forced himself to return to her, disgusted by how good it felt to see her face once more. He stopped within an inch, forcing her to look up. “Do yourself a favor. Enter that club at home, get yourself in a training program, and do not ever lie to a Dom again.” He wanted to hit something. What was it with submissives and their lies? The lie might have been smaller this time, but it was still a lie. He thundered past the scene areas and kept walking, increasing his speed. Folks saved themselves and moved out of his way. Fury radiated down his arms curling his fingers into fists, almost there. Some members thought Keller was crazy when he’d installed the small gym next to the club. When the roster quickly filled, it was Keller that was laughing all the way to the bank. Simon had a regular date with the bag hanging in the corner. He may no longer enter the ring, but the regimented workouts kept him strong and centered. A couple more steps and he'd entered the gym and saw the innocent bag hanging right where he needed it to be. He slammed his fist into the bag. Pressure reverberated from his hand straight to his heart, but it didn't release the revulsion. “Damn her.” He needed to get this out and get back on the floor. One of his best friends was about to collar his sub. The bag swung around. He walked around it and rolled his shoulders back. He wanted to witness the happiness a pair could have when things worked out and no one lied. It was just a scene, something he could shake off, and she was just a guest sub. There was no possible way she could have felt as right as he thought. The anger was tricking him. She was just another lying sub. A sub to forget. A sub he would never see again. “Damn her.” An image of her regret filled face tugged at his resolve. His fingers flexed as he remembered her velvet channel. His cock twitched, and he hit the bag again.  
Buy Links 


Evernight Publishing: http://bit.ly/1kPrG6n
 
Author Bio 


S.J. Maylee fell in love with storytelling at a young age and with it came a deep-seated desire for everyone to find their happily ever after. She’s finding the happy endings for her characters one steamy story at a time.
When she’s not reading or writing, you can find her caring for her garden, laughing with her two young sons, or dancing to her husband’s music. She’s a PMP (Project Management Professional), Nia instructor, and coffee addict.
As a writer she has a tendency to break hearts, but she always glues them back together.
  Author Links
Giveaway
SJ’s giving away one $10 Amazon gift card and THREE swag packs.
To enter: answer the question in the comments and click away on the rafflecopter.
Simon definitely sees Janna again. Do you think she'll get a second chance with him?

Friday, June 20, 2014

In the Spotlight... Elizabeth Belyeu

Please join me in welcoming Elizabeth Belyeu and her debut novel, Secondhand Shadow.

Here's some information about her release and where you can purchase it!

Back Cover Blurb:

It's supposed to be a symbiotic relationship: the Shadow serves and protects the human Lumi, the Lumi feeds and cares for the Shadow. But when Damon’s Lumi died young and severed the bond between them, he declined to go with her like a good little Shadow. Yes, it hurts. Yes, he's cold and hungry all the time. And yes, his own people call him an abomination. But for the first time, Damon's life is his own, and he’s never going back. 

Or so he thinks, until he meets Naomi, a pregnant college student… and bonds to her as his new Lumi. Which has never happened to a Shadow before.

Naomi has enough problems on her plate, juggling college and a crappy survival job, preparing for a baby, and getting over her cheating ex-husband. The last thing she needs is a dark, brooding fellow like Damon depending on her physically and emotionally, and hating her for it. But a vigilante among Damon's people has his sights set on Naomi – and they both know Damon is her only chance for survival.


Excerpt:
         “So, who do I look like?” I said.
         He jumped, as if he hadn’t expected me to have the power of speech. “What?”
         “Either I look like someone you never wanted to see again, or I smell bad. Since you got in an elevator with me, I’m going with Option A.”
         He continued staring a moment, then opened his mouth to speak.
         And the elevator shuddered to a halt.
         No. I closed my eyes. No, this cannot be. These things don’t really happen. I leaned my head back against the wall with a thunk. Then, to my own dismay, I started to laugh.
         “I’m sorry,” I gasped when I saw Damon’s stare turn from mysterious to confused. “It’s just such a cliché. The pregnant lady trapped in the elevator. If I give birth in an elevator—” Confusion became alarm. “Oh, no, I’m fine,” I said quickly. “Still two months to go, thank goodness. It’s just the idea.”
         I was able to stop laughing after a minute, because it stopped being funny. There was a help button in the wall, which I would be calm enough to push, eventually. But it could be hours before we got out of here. Hours during which I was supposed to be at work. I fumbled my cell phone out of my bookbag. No signal.
         Damon began to pace, which was a nice trick in an elevator that size, especially when he refused to come anywhere close to me. Yeah, well, I wouldn’t touch you with a thirty-nine-and-a-half-foot pole, either.
         “I can’t be here,” he muttered under his breath, and ran a hand through his hair, which very unexpectedly made my breath catch. So I have a thing for long-haired guys. Why else would I have the Lord of the Rings movies memorized?
         “Hit the help button,” I said. It was on his side.
         He paused, looked at the button a moment, then resumed pacing. “You should do it.”
Bossy much? I considered suggesting an anatomically unlikely new location for the help button, but then I remembered that just because he hadn’t pulled a knife on me yet didn’t mean he wouldn’t. I stepped toward the help button, wondering what he’d do when I crossed the orbit of his pacing.
         What he did was stop dead with a sharp breath, back up against the wall, and close his eyes.
         For the first time, I was truly afraid to turn my back on him. I froze, not breathing, and waited.
         He kept his eyes closed, breath coming faster, hands half-raised as if to ward me off. They were shaking.
         Seconds passed. A minute. Maybe more. My fear began to ebb, just a bit, to make room for pity. He was in pain. I had no idea why or how, or what I could do to help, but surely I ought to try.
         “Damon?”
         The word was tiny and feather-edged, but it broke something. Suddenly I was pinned between him and the wall, my upraised hands trapped against his chest, too stunned to push him away.
         “I won’t hurt you,” he said, pressing his face into my hair. “I won’t hurt you. I hate you too much to ever hurt you. I’m sorry.”
         I felt a hand against my cheek.
         And I was alone in the elevator.


Author Bio:
Elizabeth Belyeu is 29 years old and lives in Alabama, where she supports herself, her cat, and her steadily growing TBR pile as a library assistant. She graduated from Troy University in 2008 with a bachelorʹs in English (Creative Writing minor). This is her first novel, but she has been writing since she could hold a pencil, and plans to continue until she is too senile to type.


Buy Links:

Where to Find Me:

Thursday, June 19, 2014

In the Spotlight... Heather Gray

Please join me in welcoming Heather Gray and her newest release, Jackal – Regency Refuge, Book 2. Isn't the cover gorgeous? Love the cover model's gown!

Here's some info about Jackal.

Back Cover Blurb:
Hiding in the shadows just got harder.

When tragedy strikes, Juliana and her family must flee their home. Can they persuade a virtual stranger to help them? Juliana isn't so sure, especially after their chaperone threatens to cane him. Even as Juliana struggles to trust him, she finds herself drawn to this mysterious man. Surely all she wants from him is refuge…

Rupert is a man whose life depends on his ability to remain unnoticed. What, then, is he supposed to do with this family he's inherited?  His life is overrun with an ancient chaperone who would terrify a lesser man, two spirited girls, and the secretive Juliana – someone he comes to think of as his own precious jewel.

With this new responsibility thrust upon him, Rupert will have to make sacrifices – but will God ask him to sacrifice everything?


Excerpt:
1810
A duke had been cut down in the prime of his life. According to the War Department, The Hunter was to blame.
Jackal had been put onto The Hunter's scent and told to ferret him out at all cost. It was his job, his duty to the crown, and he treated it with the seriousness it demanded. Evil could not be allowed to go unpunished, and people who took pleasure in destroying the lives of others would not walk away with impunity, not on his watch.
Jackal met with his contacts in the Austrian government and found no gratification in revealing they had a traitor in their midst. It had been a necessary move, and now the problem would be dealt with. The Austrians would put The Hunter down, and England's hands would remain clean of the mess, exactly as the minister wanted.
Grim foreboding furrowed his brow as he left the meeting with the Austrians. His lack of evidence mocked him. He'd done as ordered, and they'd believed him, but had it been his choice, he'd have gathered more proof first.
Jackal climbed into his carriage and slapped his hand against the roof, signaling the driver with his readiness to depart. A lengthy ride awaited him. He would leave the carriage and his current identity behind in Munich once he arrived there. New papers and fresh horses were waiting for him. The same would happen again when he crossed over into Stuttgart, and then again in Brussels. His task was clear: remain alive long enough to claim each of the new identities and return safely to his homeland.
Sitting back on the roughly cushioned seat, he accepted what he'd begun to suspect. This would be his last assignment for the crown. He was getting too old for the job. The time to retire was upon him. The younger bucks were willing – if not entirely ready – to take their place among the ranks of the unseen, unknown, and unnamed heroes of war. Jackal shook his head. Not too long ago, he'd been one of those young bucks. Ready for retirement at age thirty-two? The thought would be laughable in any other career. In his line of work, though, only those who retired young lived to be old and grey.
Lost in melancholy, Jackal barely noted the change from the raucous noise of a bustling merchant district to the quiet pastoral sounds that would accompany him on most of this journey. Europe was a large land with rich cities interspersed with vast emptiness dotted with small hamlets. Traveling by carriage would take weeks, but as long as he could report back that he'd done as ordered, it would be worth the time.
He settled into his seat. They were still days from their first sanctioned stop. As always, the best defense was to keep moving.

****

A change in the carriage's soothing methodical movement woke Jackal from his doze and alerted him that something was amiss. Awareness coursed through his veins, pushing away the remnant of sleep. A quick glance at the curtained window told him it was late morning. They'd ridden through the night to put as much distance as possible between them and Vienna – the current hub of Austrian government.
The carriage was moving with a wildness he'd felt only one other time in his life. Dread snaked through his middle as he accepted the truth. There was no longer a driver in control of his conveyance. Jackal crouched low on the floor for balance as he prepared to throw open the door and jump. Perhaps he should have sought retirement one assignment sooner.
Before his hand could touch the door, a jarring force threw Jackal against the seat to his left, shooting pain up his arm. They'd been boarded, then, and his driver – an agent he'd worked with for years – had likely not been alive to sound the alarm. Emotion would come later. For now, Jackal needed to focus on one thing: Survival.
The carriage gained speed under the skillful hand of whoever now sat in the driver's seat. I should have jumped when I had the chance. Jackal shook his head as he calculated the odds of survival.
Palming his gun, he pounded on the roof of the carriage, commanding the driver to stop. Surprise flared to life as his conveyance did indeed come to a standstill. Rather than slow to a gentle stop, the carriage halted its forward momentum in a skidding bone-shaking fashion. It was the kind of stop that guaranteed no beast would be able to walk away from it afterward.
Jackal jumped before the dust could settle. His best chance would be to go on the offence and catch the driver off-guard. Though he'd assumed the driver had a partner, nothing could have prepared him for the vicious attack awaiting him on the other side of the door.
Jackal no sooner touched the ground than he was trampled under the anxious feet of a high-stepping horse. He'd not even had a chance to gain his footing. As he lay on the ground, Jackal both heard and felt the breaking of bone in his left leg. A couple of his ribs surrendered to the heavy hooves as well. Rolling onto his side, he took aim at the perpetrator. The sun blinded him, and he could distinguish no features on the man whose gun dared him to move. In the split second it took for him to reassure himself he was not aiming at an innocent bystander – for they were indeed in one of the numerous modest hamlets that dotted the continent's countryside – the rider pulled the trigger, and pain seared through Jackal's already throbbing leg. It felt as if the lead had burrowed its way into his very bone.
He pulled the trigger of his flintlock pistol, and the man on the horse recoiled. Even as Jackal reached for the gun concealed at the ankle of his wounded leg, he knew it was futile. The rider had a second gun in-hand before his own fingers even brushed against the grip of his hidden weapon. Pain tore through his shoulder, immobilizing his shooting arm. Another ball of lead ripped into his middle. He felt his blood seeping out onto the street.
Accepting his fate, he asked only one thing. "At whose hand am I to die this day?"
Laughter vile enough to sour port met his question. "Today the Jackal shall meet his end at the hands of The Hunter."
The Hunter? The Austrians were supposed to have him by now.
"Your plan failed, and I am free. Prepare to die."
Blackness closing in around him, Jackal released the last thought held captive in his mind.
Why God?
Cold claimed his body as he slipped into darkness. He neither heard nor felt the next shot.

Author Bio:
Heather Gray is the author of the Ladies of Larkspur inspirational western romance series, including Mail Order man, Just Dessert, and Redemption.  She also writes the Regency Refuge series with titles His Saving Grace, Jackal, and the soon-to-be-released Queen.  But that's not all!  Interested in contemporary Christian romance?  Take a look at Ten Million Reasons and Nowhere for Christmas.

Heather loves coffee, God, her family, and laughter – not necessarily in that order!  She writes approachable and flawed characters who, through the highs and lows of life, find a way to love God, embrace each day, and laugh out loud right along with her.  And, yeah, her books almost always have someone who's a coffee addict.  Some things just can't be helped.


Buy Links:

Where to Find Me:

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

In the Spotlight... Krysten Lindsay Hager

Please join me in welcoming Krysten Lindsay Hager and her new release, True Colors. Isn't the cover gorgeous?


Blurb:


Landry gets pushed into trying out for the American Ingénue reality show modeling competition with her two best friends. She doesn’t think she stands a chance, but she advances to the next level in the competition and her friends ignore her at school when they get cut.

Enter the gorgeous Devon, who also makes the first cut and includes Landry in her group of friends. Devon becomes the perfect best friend, but can their friendship survive the competition?

Landry hopes her big break could come at any moment, but soon sees there’s much more to modeling than she thought. She begins missing out on being with friends and has the chance to have a boyfriend when she meets a boy named Vladi from another school.

Part of Landry wants to be famous (and have her hair look good for once), but part of her just wants to be accepted. She learns about friendships, being true to yourself, and that a good hair conditioner doesn’t hurt.


Excerpt:


Crap. What if I got the dry heaves on stage? And what if it got so bad one of my eyes bulged out or something? I should just go back up to the room… double crap. Mom had the room key. At least there was a bathroom for when I had to worry about… the other end.
While I was deciding whether or not to chicken out, the stage manager, Georgia, started having the girls go out on stage. I overheard somebody say one girl fell out of her shoe as she stepped on the runway.
“Is she okay?”  
“Yeah, she’s fine. She just pretended to have two heels on and walked on her tip toes,” Georgia said.
I would have burst into tears and run off the stage — kind of like I did when I was four years old and in a dance recital. We were supposed to be little ballerinas and have scarves attached to our tutus, but my mom was still in school at the time and she came home late and forgot to give me my scarves. So all the other little girls pulled out their scarves, and there’s a video of me looking on either side of my tutu for my scarves and then bursting into tears crying “Mommy!” as I ran off the stage. My grandmother said I was adorable, but I don’t think it was any coincidence my grandfather died two weeks later.
At least I didn’t have to worry about missing scarves tonight. All I had to do was focus on not tripping. If I could just make it down the runway and back, I’d be fine.

Buy Links:


Author bio:



Krysten Lindsay Hager is an author and book addict who has never met a bookstore she didn’t like. She’s worked as a journalist and also writes middle grade, YA, humor essays, and adult fiction. Her debut novel, TRUE COLORS, will be out June 17th from Astraea Press. She is originally from Michigan and has lived in South Dakota, Portugal, and currently resides in Southern Ohio where you can find her reading and writing when she’s not catching up on her favorite shows. Find her at: www.krystenlindsay.com.